ITF, UNI Hold DHL to Task for Anti-Worker Practices (6/30)

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The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) and UNI, a global labor federation, have issued a joint press release announcing their intentions to bring a major complaint against DHL, a postal company, for anti-worker practices.


Below is a copy of the release.


ITF and UNI take DHL complaint to UN

Unions blow whistle on World Cup sponsor


Global unions UNI and the ITF have blown the whistle on Women’s World Cup sponsor DeutschePost/DHL with a complaint to the UN that logistics giant DHL is disregarding workers’ rights.


The global unions are targeting DHL during the Women’s World Cup, which is being held in Germany this month and next, and for which Deutsche Post/DHL is a major sponsor. At the opening of the tournament they began distributing a ‘game planner’ that contained reports from DHL workers in the competitor nations of violations of their labour rights. Now the global unions have filed a complaint with the UN pointing out that in 2006 the company committed itself to the 10 principles of the UN Global Compact for responsible business conduct.


The complaint accuses DHL of having totally disregarded several of these principles, and urges the UN to remove DHL from the list of signatory companies.


UNI general secretary Philip Jennings, said: “DHL has been caught short on compliance with the UN principles of fairness in business and work. There is no excuse any more – it’s time for them to step up and meet their global commitments if they want to be taken seriously as a ‘responsible business’.”


Ingo Marowsky, ITF organising globally coordinator, added: “Once again we press the company to ensure that all its 470,000 workers receive decent treatment, and that the reported abuses in some of its operating countries are eliminated immediately.”


In Colombia and the USA, for example, whose world cup teams will play each other on Saturday, DHL has failed to play fair with its employees, the complaint reports.


In Colombia, DHL uses lie detector tests as an interrogation method. This disgraceful practice is an offense against human dignity and the UN Global Compact, the ITF and UNI assert. When they confronted the company with this behavior at its AGM last month, Deutsche Post DHL CEO, Frank Appel, was unapologetic. He announced that DHL would continue to use polygraph tests in "exceptional cases". Meanwhile DHL employees in the US have reported discrimination, insults and a lack of standards which often leads to injuries.


UNI and the ITF are calling on DHL to play fair and respect its employees. They want:

- the signing of a global framework agreement that will guarantee that all 470,000 DHL employees worldwide enjoy fundamental rights at work, including the right to organise a union, in order to achieve dignity in the workplace,

- trade union representation,

- the promotion of women to leadership positions and

- consistent observance of human and labor rights.


UNI, the global union federation for trade and service occupations, represents 2.5 million workers globally / within the postal and logistics sector. The ITF represents transport unions with 4.6 million members worldwide.




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